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Stock Market & Financial Investment News

News Breaks
April 14, 2014
12:26 EDTC, MDT, EW, WBMD, GDP, ENH, AHL, FB, TWTR, NQOn The Fly: Midday Wrap
Stocks on Wall Street were higher at midday after a bigger than expected increase in retail sales, along with better than expected headline profits at Citigroup (C), lent some confidence to buyers at the start of a holiday-shortened week of trading. The retail data, which showed sales notched their largest gain in 1.5 years in March, added to a recent string of better than expected domestic economic reports. However, today's data was followed by an upward move in the major averages, which had not been the case in some recent trading sessions. ECONOMIC EVENTS: In the U.S., retail sales climbed 1.1% in March, beating expectations for an increase of 0.8%. Retail sales excluding autos rose 0.7%, which also beat estimates. Business inventories grew 0.4% in February, versus the consensus forecast for a 0.5% gain. In Europe, the EU's statistics agency said industrial production across the 18 countries that share the euro rose by 0.2% in February from the prior month and by 1.7% from the same month of the prior year. COMPANY NEWS: Shares of Citigroup advanced more than 4% after the company's first quarter earnings, excluding one-time items and accounting adjustments, of $1.30 per share easily beat the consensus $1.14 per share forecast. CEO Michael Corbat said the company delivered strong results despite a quarter "that was difficult," noting that the bank reduced its deferred tax assets more than any other quarter since the crisis and drove Citi Holdings closer to break even. Prior to today's good news, the bank had been in focus for a number of negative headlines during the quarter, including its disclosure of fraud in its Mexican unit and the Federal Reserve objecting to its capital return plans... Twitter (TWTR) shares rose over 3% after the company disclosed that its co-founders, Jack Dorsey and Evan Williams, and its CEO, Richard Costolo, have informed the company that they have no current plans to sell any of their shares as a lockup of the stock approaches on May 5. Social network peer Facebook (FB) also gained more than 1.5% after news reports from Europe said the company is close to obtaining Irish regulatory approval to provide financial services such as electronic payments and exchanges with other members... Aspen Insurance (AHL) remained up 10% near noon despite the company rejecting the takeover offer that its peer in the insurance and reinsurance industry, Endurance Specialty (ENH), made public. Aspen said the "ill-conceived" $47.50 per share buyout offer made by Endurance represents a "strategic mismatch" and carries "significant execution risk." MAJOR MOVERS: Among the notable gainers was Goodrich Petroleum (GDP), which jumped 37% after the company reported strong results for a well it drilled in Louisiana. Also higher was WebMD (WBMD), which advanced 18% after advising it now expects its Q1 revenue to be at the high end of the range the company previously provided and for its adjusted EBITDA to beat the high end of its prior guidance. Among the noteworthy losers was Medtronic (MDT), which dropped 2% after its competitor, Edwards Lifesciences (EW), was granted a preliminary injunction limiting the sale of Medtronic's CoreValve system in the U.S. due to patent infringement. Edwards, which was upgraded at JPMorgan and CRT Capital following the court victory, gained 12%. Also lower again were shares of NQ Mobile (NQ), which slid another 5.8% as its post-earnings weakness continues. Short selling research firm Muddy Waters, which has previously alleged NQ to be a fraud, said the recently reported results indicate that the company's auditor has stepped up its scrutiny of the Chinese company. INDEXES: Near midday, the Dow was up 131.17, or 0.82%, to 16,157.92, the Nasdaq was up 40.19, or 1.0%, to 4,039.93, and the S&P 500 was up 15.84, or 0.87%, to 1,831.53.
News For C;TWTR;FB;AHL;ENH;GDP;WBMD;EW;MDT;NQ From The Last 14 Days
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October 14, 2014
08:01 EDTCCitigroup to exit consumer businesses in 11 markets
Citigroup announced strategic actions to accelerate the transformation of Global Consumer Banking by focusing on those markets where it has the greatest scale and growth potential. As a result, Citigroup intends to exit its consumer businesses in 11 markets. The new consumer banking footprint will serve nearly 57 million clients in 24 markets that capture over 95% of GCB’s existing revenue base, while further simplifying its operations and improving its performance. The affected businesses include the consumer franchises in Costa Rica, Czech Republic, Egypt, El Salvador, Guam, Guatemala, Hungary, Japan, Nicaragua, Panama and Peru, as well as the consumer finance business in Korea. Active sales processes are underway for the majority of the businesses, and subject to market conditions and regulatory and other approvals, the strategic actions are currently expected to be substantially completed by year-end 2015. The businesses will be reported as part of Citi Holdings as of the first quarter 2015 to provide greater transparency with respect to the performance of the ongoing operations reported in GCB. Citigroup’s Institutional Clients Group will continue to serve clients in these markets. “I am committed to simplifying our company and allocating our finite resources to where we can generate the best returns for our shareholders. While we have made progress optimizing these 11 consumer markets, we believe our Global Consumer Bank will achieve stronger performance by focusing on the countries where our scale and network provide a competitive advantage,” CEO Michael Corbat said.
08:00 EDTCCitigroup reports Q3 revenue $20B ex- CVA/DVA
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07:59 EDTCCitigroup reports Q3 EPS $1.15 ex CVA/DVA, consensus $1.12
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07:13 EDTCCitigroup chairman suggests wrapping FDIC, OCC into single regulator, WSJ says
Citigroup Chairman Michael O'Neill is calling for a more rational regulatory landscape, the Wall Street Journal reports. He suggests wrapping the FDIC and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency into a single banking regulator. Reference Link
October 13, 2014
16:02 EDTCOptions Update; October 13, 2014
iPath S&P 500 VIX Short-Term Futures up 3.71 to 39.56. Option volume leaders: AAPL TSLA TWTR AMZN FB NFLX SUNE GILD BAC PBR according to Track Data.
15:24 EDTCNotable companies reporting before tomorrow's open
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14:33 EDTCEarnings Preview: Citigroup to report with shares up 11% over last six months
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13:48 EDTCCitigroup October volatility increases into Q3 and revenue outlook
Citigroup October call option implied volatility is at 39, November is at 25, December is at 25, January is at 24; compared to its 26-week average of 23 according to Track Data, suggesting large near term price movement into the expected release of Q3 results on October 14.
13:10 EDTFBGoogle's Schmidt says Amazon is company's biggest search rival, FT reports
Eric Schmidt, the executive chairman of Google (GOOG), says Amazon (AMZN) is his company's biggest rival in search, not Bing (MSFT) or Yahoo (YHOO), the Financial Times reports. Schmidt also argued in Berlin that Google should not be regulated "as if it were the gatekeeper of the internet," given the influence of Amazon and Facebook (FB). Reference Link
10:50 EDTTWTRTwitter reverses lower on the session, levels to watch
Shares are down 2% to $49.38 at time of writing, nearing 1-month lows. Support below is at $47.56, the 1-month low. Resistance is at $50.16.
09:39 EDTFB, TWTRActive equity options trading on open
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09:22 EDTMDTMedtronic announces positive data from CoreValve ADVANCE DA Study
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07:37 EDTEWAmerican Society of Anesthesiologists to hold annual meeting
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07:19 EDTCAmEx, Capital One profits seen boosted by credit card 'sweet spot,' WSJ says
Credit card players such as American Express (AXP) and Capital One (COF), as well as banks with significant card units like JPMorgan (JPM), stand to benefit from the U.S. card industry's "sweet spot" of moderate economic growth, low interest rates and consumers who are better managing payments while growing their spending, said The Wall Street Journal, which noted that consulting firm R.K. Hammer estimates U.S. card issuers' revenue will grow 9% this year to $158.6B. Other U.S. banks with credit card units include Bank of America (BAC), Citigroup (C), and Wells Fargo (WFC) and other card companies include Visa (V) and MasterCard (MA). Reference Link
07:13 EDTMDTBioFlorida to hold a conference
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06:44 EDTCRegulators seeking banks' auto loan data, Reuters reports
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05:15 EDTFBFacebook, Ericsson, XL Axiata innovate to improve Indonesia network performance
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00:04 EDTCBanking regulators want more disclosure on auto loans, Reuters says
Banking regulators are requesting that banks provide more details on their auto loan portfolios, says Reuters. Balances remaining on auto loans are rising and about a fifth of the loans are subprime, added Reuters. Publicly traded companies in the space include Bank of America (BAC), Citigroup (C), Capital One (COF), JPMorgan (JPM), U.S. Bancorp (USB) and Wells Fargo (WFC). Reference Link
October 12, 2014
18:06 EDTTWTRTwitter, French bank partner to allow money transfers via tweets
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13:03 EDTCBanks agree on derivatives procedures for future crisis scenario, WSJ says
Meeting at the Federal Reserve in Washington, top banking executives from 18 large U.S., European and Japanese banks agreed in principle to wait up to 48 hours before seeking to terminate derivatives contracts and collect associated payments from a troubled financial institution, says the Wall Street Journal. Publicly traded companies in the space include Bank of America (BAC), Citigroup (C), Goldman Sachs (GS), JPMorgan (JPM), Morgan Stanley (MS), U.S. Bancorp (USB) and Wells Fargo (WFC). Reference Link
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